Whether you’re visiting Porirua for the day or staying the night, we have the best things to see, eat and do in this little Greater Wellington city.
Just 20 minutes north of Wellington, Porirua is probably most famous for being home to the Whittakers chocolate factory since 1969.
However, Porirua is also home to plenty of beautiful walking tracks, outdoor activities, neat cafés and food trucks and the renowned Pātaka Art + Museum. Here’s our guide to the neatest places of Porirua.
* Cafe Chat: Popular Pāuatahanui eaterie Tuk Tuk Thai Kitchen reopens in Porirua
* Backyard tourism: Police museum great Porirua drawcard
Wake up at Post Hotel
3 Serlby Place
A newly refurbished hotel inside the old post office building, The Post is a lovely place to wake up in. The light, bright and airy apartment-style rooms (there are 36 in total), have been refreshingly decorated in a modern style. If you fancy treating yourself, the concierge can have a bouquet of Mavis and Fox Blooms delivered to your room before you arrive. How sweet is that?
Coffee and Breakfast at Local Authority
Shop 1/1 Walton Leigh Avenue
Local Authority is a pocket-sized coffee spot that packs a punch. Stop by for the best espresso in town, as well as a light breakfast. On the menu are toasted organic rye savoury and sweet options as well as a modern take on the classic New Zealand toastie, and if a liquid breakfast is more your style then the generous smoothie options should fuel you up for the rest of the day.
Pātaka Art + Museum
17 Parumoana Street
Pātaka Art + Museum is a true gem in the crown that is the valuable resource of Porirua art and history. Open since 1998, the museum and gallery is home to plenty of curious intricacies, cabinets of fine and fancy jewellery, walls of prints, fabric works, photographs and paintings, not to mention impressive Māori and Pacific history. Make your way around the exhibition detailing the story of Whiti Te Rā, both the progress of the iwi, and the bitter conflicts with the colonial government.
5 Tangare Drive
The Fryday Donuts food truck is there for your donut hit or your superfood smoothie. Flavours galore, expect to find fun things like banoffee, lemon zest, maple and bacon, apple cinnamon, Reese’s peanut butter, cookies and cream and vanilla glaze, as well as the good old original sugar and cinnamon. Do be warned though, these babies sell out fast. Open Thursday to Saturday.
Harbours Edge Pop-Up
16 Parumoana Street
Harbours Edge Pop-Up is home to Get Fixed Bicycle workshop and café, and fashion and homewares store Blue Bell Club. Kick about on the lawn and enjoy getting to know some of the locals. Blue Bell’s beautifully vibrant cushions, art, crafts and clothing are the sort of treasure no magpie-eyed customer can resist.
The Little Goat
Once a travelling food truck, The Little Goat is now set firmly in its little spot, serving delicious fare based on Mediterranean recipes. Neighbouring foodie La Cabrita (it’s Little Goat in Spanish) has all the makings of a Mexican taco stall, and although the cuisines are from totally different parts of the planet, they work here together perfectly.
Move your limbs at Whitireia Park
Fancy a walk somewhere that’s really going to blow off the cobwebs? Whitireia Park looks out over Porirua Harbour, and the stunning coastal views come hand in hand with some good old sea wind that is most likely just what the doctor ordered. Look out to Mana Island and marvel at all this beauty that is 180 hectares of grassland right on your doorstep.
Afternoon refreshments at Plimmerton Kombucha
3/51 Kenepuru Drive
Brewed by locals, bottled by locals, sold by locals and loved by locals, this fermented brew is combining great taste with great probiotic qualities and ensuring their community has the best gut health around. Using only real fruit and spices (although the recipes are kept close to their chest), Plimmerton Kombucha doesn’t cut any corners, but instead brews authentically and without nasty additions. Try crisp green apple, jasmine, berry, orange and tumeric, or lemon and ginger for some real thirst quenchers
Dinner at Tuk Tuk Thai Restaurant
15 Hartham Place North
A popular restaurant, Tuk Tuk provides its customers with delicious Thai food without having to leave Porirua for the big smoke. The owner’s intention is for Tuk Tuk Thai to be the central connection for people to meet from the likes of Kapiti Coast, Hutt City and Wellington and have a great night out. In terms of meals, crowd favourites are the Pad Thai and green curry. Now and then they roll out a crispy pork dish which is also a big hit with locals.
Watch a film at Light House Cinema
3 Paekakariki Road
Sibling to same-named cinemas in both the CBD and Petone, Light House Pāuatahanui is the only independent movie spot for some miles around. Those living in the area who are partial to watching the big screen have every opportunity to keep up to date with the latest in film. The mix of blockbuster and independent films screening here means there’s something for any type of movie fan, while student discounts, mums and bubs screenings and fundraising films ensure this is a community spot through and through.
Discover more neat places around New Zealand at neatplaces.co.nz
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